July 8, 2011
Immigration from Mexico to the U.S. is a controversial topic. So is the state of the immigrants and their descendents in the United States.
A problem with the treatment of the subject is that it's often presented in a very one-sided manner. The U.S. Mainstream Media, and certainly the Mexican media, presents any sort of opposition to legal or even illegal immigration as evidence of "racism," "xenophobia," or "hate." Immigrants, including illegal aliens, are regularly presented as innocent victims.
This sort of knee-jerk melodrama is quite unfair to the majority of American citizens, who certainly do not hate Mexico or Mexicans, but do believe their immigration laws should be respected.
I learned a lot about the subject while residing in Mexico, listening to regular Mexicans and the media talk about the subject.
What I finally concluded was that Mexicans have completely different views of immigration from that of ordinary Americans, whereas the American media/political elite has very different views from that of most Americans.
The traditional view of immigration in the U.S. is that immigrants come to our country because they want to become Americans, and then they become Americans. Most Americans still believe that immigrants should assimilate, that is, learn English and become loyal Americans.
In contrast, the U.S. political/media elite support multiculturalism and think regular Americans should accomodate the immigrants.
Living in Mexico, I learned how Mexicans viewed emigration to the U.S. Mexicans don't believe that Mexican emigrants who become U.S. citizens cease to be Mexicans. They are always considered Mexicans. Even grandchildren or great-grandchildren of Mexican immigrants, born in the U.S., are still considered Mexicans.
the Mexican government, through its diplomatic corps, openly meddles in
U.S. immigration policy. Disturbingly, the Mexican government also claims
jurisdiction over Mexican-Americans. What objective observe would not
think this is a problem?
In Mexico, contradictory messages are sent out. On the one hand, it's said that Mexicans are treated horribly in the United Statese. On the other hand, they shouldn't leave the United States, and they fight to remain. What's going on? If Mexicans were treated so horribly in the U.S., why would they be going there in droves and fighting to stay ?
Middle-class Americans don't want their neighborhoods overrun by illegal aliens who don't speak the language, drive down wage levels, and disproportionately use government services. For this they are called "racist". But would Mexicans allow the same thing in their own country?
Regarding immigration in general, it's highly doubtful that mass emigration to the United States is helping Mexico develop. I think it impedes Mexico's development. Mass emigration doesn't encourage Mexico's political and business elite to solve Mexico's problems and develop Mexico's economy. In fact, it causes many social problems by splitting up families and encouraging Mexicans to leave Mexico rather than solve the problems in their own country.
Mexico's real friends in the U.S are not those who encourage open borders. Consider California Congressman Darrell Issa for example, Issa is an immigration restrictionist, not an open borders supporter. Yet it's Representative Issa who is spearheading the investigation of the destructive "Project Gunrunner" program, in which high-ranking U.S. officials intentionally allowed arms to read the hands of Mexican drug cartels. Congressman Issa has actually traveled to Mexico to meet with Mexican officials. The Obama Administration, meanwhile, continues to stonewall. Who are the real friends of Mexico here?
A recent soccer game illustrated the problem of assimilation in the United States. In Pasadena, California, the U.S. and Mexican soccer teams faced each other. The audience, mostly composed of American citizens of Mexican ancestry born in the U.S.A., overwhelmingly supported Mexico. Anti-American unsportsmanlike conduct was rampant.
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The U.S. soccer team was booed. During the playing of "The Star Spangled Banner"
The U.S. national anthem was booed, the U.S. team was booed.
"I was born in Mexico and that is where my heart will always be" said one of the Team Mexico fans. Another said "We're not booing the country. We're booing the team. There's a big difference."
So I ask, is assimilation occurring? Are Americans wrong to question our current mass immigration policy? Are restrictionists wrong to call for a time-out to assimilate immigrants?
� 2011 Allan Wall - All Rights Reserved
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Allan Wall recently returned to the U.S. after residing many years in Mexico.